Cannes Today—Netflix x Google, Paris Hilton x Gary V, and the branded yacht scene explained
Netflix talks to Google about its ad plans
“Netflix’s ad tech business is one of the hottest deals on offer in Cannes,” Ad Age’s Garett Sloane and Jack Neff write, “and titans like Google are in talks to win the streaming giant’s connected TV business, according to people familiar with negotiations.” In fact, Google could be “one of the main contenders to partner with Netflix on advertising. ‘If it’s anyone, it’s going to be Google,’ said one advertising executive, who is familiar with the inner workings of both companies.” The French Riviera is as good a place as any to seal the deal, right?
Why this would make a lot of sense: Sloane and Neff note that “Google would be a logical partner for Netflix, since it already has friendly relationships with companies like Disney, which uses Google Ad Manager to manage internet ad delivery, even as Google can be a rival to those companies.” (A Google spokesperson declined to comment to Ad Age.)
We’ll always have Paris—and Gary
On Tuesday, Paris Hilton, self-styled “Queen of the Metaverse,” took to the stage at Cannes with Gary Vaynerchuk, who we like to think of as the Paris Hilton of marketing. The meeting of the minds—on a panel about NFTs—was witnessed by Ad Age’s Alexandra Jardine, who reports that Hilton presented her virtual bona fides, including the digital wearables she unveiled in 2015, the launch of avatar hangout “Paris World” in 2017, and her partnership with brands such as Levi’s on what the socialite called “amazing activations in the metaverse.”
For his part, Vaynerchuk told the ad industry to get with the program when it comes to NFTs, telling the audience to “bring our internet brain to the blockchain” and understand that “Web3 is real.”
Marc Pritchard on P&G’s increased scrutiny of ad spending
Procter & Gamble Chief Brand Officer Marc Pritchard took the stage at Cannes on Tuesday and revealed that the company is (no surprise) increasing scrutiny of its advertising spending and creativity in this time of relentless inflation. But, Ad Age’s Jack Neff reports, “that doesn’t mean P&G plans to cut spending. It does mean that productivity of spending is more important than ever, he said. ‘We want to get this mass reach with greater precision, and not waste as much reach as possible. ... We need to raise the bar on communicating performance and doing it in a creative way.’”
Plus, what this means for P&G and TV: “Efficiency also means P&G is still trying to avoid doing deals via the TV upfronts as much as possible,” Neff notes, “which he said leads to over-buying, make goods and other inefficiencies.”
The Cannes winners circle
Today’s haul includes:
The Cannes yacht scene deconstructed
Ad Age’s Jack Neff reports that compared to 2019 (the last time the festival was in person), Cannes’ yacht row has “more empty slots, more big boats unsponsored and sometimes even stranger boat-fellows.” To wit: “One of the more interesting cohabitation arrangements combines Comscore, Innovid ... and the Game Show Network.”
There are fewer boats sponsored by ad tech companies this year, but measurement companies are on the rise—including Nielsen and VideoAmp, which each have their own yachts.
See also: Terence Kawaja of Luma Partners unveiled the 2022 Cannes Yacht LUMAscape on Twitter.
Welcome to Cloud Island
“Meta’s Nicola Mendelsohn is on Cloud Island at Cannes,” writes Ad Age’s Garett Sloane. “Cloud Island is the name for Meta’s virtual Cannes, built as its major metaverse marketing showcase at the ad festival, where avatars can play volleyball or otherwise take in a digital version of the French Riviera. Mendelsohn, the company’s global head of business solutions, has been showcasing Meta’s turn to the metaverse for two years running while helping lead the company’s presence at Cannes.”
The pitch: “On Tuesday,” Sloane adds, “Meta announced new partnerships with major brands, including guitar-maker Fender and Mini, the car company. Agency R/GA helped design the Fender Stratoverse, open in Horizon Worlds. The Fender world is a guitar-shaped island, and Fender CMO Evan Jones called it the company’s first foray into the metaverse.”
Keep reading here.
See also: “Lowe’s metaverse plans include NFT hardhats and virtual furniture”—Sloane on the retailer’s Cannes showcase of a new platform for creators to use its digital products in virtual environments.
• “Reality stars bring drama to the Croisette”—Ad Age’s Parker Herren on CannesCon.
• “Cannes Lions is back in person, and here’s what to expect”—an Ad Age Custom Content post from Ashley Joseph and Ad Age Studio 30.
• “How AI can fix bias in data—IBM, WPP and Delta are creating a roadmap for algorithms”—Jack Neff on IBM’s panel in Cannes.
• “Nielsen rival VideoAmp wins backing from TelevisaUnivision for currency and planning”—Neff on a deal announced at Cannes.
And finally ...
Here is what the metaverse at Cannes looks like—from outside the metaverse (aka the real world), courtesy of Havas Group.